Tuesday, December 31, 2019

My Best of 2019

As the final few hours of the last year, and the second decade of the 2000s winds down, I'm here drinking tea, and writing a blog post of reflection. 😁 I'm linking up with Cheryl's Meadow Mist Designs, Best of 2019 Linky Party. I wrote 126 posts this year, counting this one! This year instead of most views, most comments type of criteria, I simply picked some favourites from the year. It was hard, and

1. My favourite mini quilt this year is Moody Blues.

It's my own design. I thoroughly loved every bit of the process of making it. It is one of the quilts that will be hanging at the Kingsville Library in January. I was asked to be the featured artist once again!

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Fidget Quilt - Island Batik 3D Challenge Project 2

I'm back with another project I made for the December 3D Challenge for Island Batik! I had an unplanned two-week hiatus from sewing my Island Batik projects, (I made the lap quilt 'Grace' and looked after my granddog, Penny), so I'm squeaking this one in, and hopefully one more before the 31.


This is a fidget quilt. It's an extra-large placemat sized quilt that can easily sit on a person's lap. As you can see, there are several items sewn onto the quilt. What is their purpose? Read on to find out.

Saturday, December 28, 2019

DrEAMi! #35

OMG this is the BEST squirrel image EVER! Many thanks to my dear friend John, who knows me so well, reads my blog, every post, and sent this to me.


via GIPHY

It's the last Drop Everything And Make it! party of the year, so massage those last few gotta-makes into a 'all done!' and link up at the end of this post. Like the squirrel on the table, I think we all could use a massage after spending a lot of hours hunched over our sewing machines during the past month!

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Imaginary Friends - A little bit different of an I Like/Love #36 Post

I've been writing this post in my head since I was in England. You know, I still want to pinch myself that that is a true statement. I was in England. Only a little over a month ago. It seems surreal. And I need to write a post or ten about the entire incredible trip. But not now. The title of this post comes from the husband of my good friend Sue with whom I met up and shared lunch whilst in England this summer.
I just noticed something interesting: we both love our dogs, and look at the card above us on the mantle!

This is also an I like/love post because it is filled with people and things and events for which I am most grateful. I am linking up with LeeAnna at Not Afriaid of Color, where you will find other like-minded grateful peeps. I haven't mused much in recent posts, so this is one of those posts. For newer readers, my blog was originally just called Musings of a Menopausal Melon because I started it when I was in the full throes of menopause and wanted to write down my thoughts at this new stage of my life along with my quilting adventures. Then, when I wanted the blog to be known as mainly a quilting blog, I came up with a more Ă  propos name, but with a nod to the original with the acronym and double entendre (love them) of 'mmm', having the extra meaning of, 'yum!' or 'so good!'

So...friends, both imaginary and real....

Monday, December 23, 2019

2020 Planning Post

I am a list-maker, a planner, and always set goals, be they minuscule or lofty. So even though I didn't manage to do this formal post last year, I had goals for the year. Today I'm taking some time to formally write down some thoughts for 2020, and I'm joining in with Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl for the party that she hosts each December.

2019 Planning Party

First of all, let's see how I did in 2019.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Grace

This has been another year for new experiences, and, as I approach a rather sobering milestone in 2020, I am quietly pleased that I am still learning, still trying new things, still up for challenges. More on this in my 2019 Review and Planning for 2020 post. This quilt was a commissioned one. I do believe the only previous commissioned quilt was my mum's request in 2016 for one for her brother, which I called con fuoco. This quilt is also a squirrel, a 'Drop Everything And Make it!' project, which I will link up with my party on the last Saturday of the month where we celebrate all those DrEAMi projects.

When Dayna's good friend in Alberta lost her baby in her second trimester, in November, she talked at length to me about it, and one of the first things she asked was if I could make her a quilt. We both knew it needed hearts on it. I sent her a couple of images I found on Pinterest, we chatted several times, and somewhere in the conversation I said what if I design one with hearts floating all over it... And, as designs are wont to do, this design became much more than I'd originally thought.


Thursday, December 19, 2019

HRT Tutorial - No rulers! Not paper-pieced!

The quilt top I've just finished requires a few HRTs, also known as Half Rectangle Triangles. These differ from HSTs (Half Square Triangles) in that they are not square. Duh, I know, but think about it: both have a right angle formed by their perpendicular two sides, let's say the base and the left side, but then the diagonal line on an HST is more of a gentle slope, a 45° one to be exact, whereas the HRT has a much sharper slope. This can give you some lovely icicle-like pointy points!

The downside is that that require a little more work in the prep stage to make them. I know there are lots of rulers out there to make the 'little more work', much less, but here is a tutorial I wrote for the size I needed in my current quilt, which is 2X4" finished.

I would first like to credit Kirsty at Bonjour Quilts whose HRT tutorial popped up when I searched for a handy-dandy chart, and she has just such a handy-dandy chart for both HRTs and HSTs, so pop over and check it out, download it and then come back. I will wait, as they say...

Friday, December 13, 2019

Holiday House

This is my first project for the December challenge with Island Batik. We were to incorporate 3D elements into our project. As you know, I love depth perception, shadows and layers in quilting, so to say I was excited about this challenge is a bit of an understatement! Truth tea: I have exactly six project ideas for the challenge... Here is the first:
It's my House Block pattern (see sidebar link to it) with a 6" presents block on the side! All of the fabrics were supplied by Island Batik.  Hobbs Batting supplied the 100% wool batting (which I originally used in my suitcases quilt Oh! The Places You'll Go!) and Aurifil supplied most of the thread I used in the project. Some of the threads and the embellishments are my own.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

I Like/Love #35

I'm popping in with an extra gratitude post this month because I forgot a few items from my end of the month post in November.

1. The first one I forgot to include was a lovely conversation I had with a fellow ambassador, Gene. I like him! We were speaking of our mums/moms, and I had said how my mum would have loved seeing all the quilts in the 3D Challenge for December. She especially loved the trompe-l'ceil effect used by artists where the eye is fooled. Bargello effects where a quilt looks rippled or folded is one example. Somehow we got to talking and discovered our mutual love of figures of speech, and our mutual cringing at writers' faux pas in writing, such as spelling the French expression, 'voilĂ !' used in the sense of 'ta-da!' and meaning 'here (or there) it is!' as 'viola' which is a flower, or 'wa-la' which is not even the correct pronunciation. A 'v' is a 'v' in French.

Anyhow... to get to my like! Regarding the trompe-l'ceil effect paired with a pun, Gene sent me the photo below from an art book he has.
Isn't that terrific? The artist is Jim Brower who passed away in 2016 at the age of 101. I especially love how well he painted the oil! *Le dictionnaire Larousse let me know that trompe-l'ceil is the correct spelling, with the hyphen and the joined oe. That linked oe comes from Latin in this case.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

December OMG

I remembered...forgot...remembered...forgot and have actually remembered before the 7th is over. I am so glad I get friends' blogs via email as it is that that kept reminding me...

This is not on my Q4FAL List, so it's a fair OMG; I try not to 'double-dip'! And yeah, yeah, I have a ton of want to and need to-do's from which to choose! For December I want to use my House Block pattern (see sidebar for the link) or click here (affiliate link) to get your copy for just $1, to make a Christmassy cushion cover with 3D effects.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

The Kelpie's Star - November Island Batik Challenge

I would not make a good boy scout... That bit about being prepared eludes me. I knew I would have Brianne and Brady visiting us over the last weekend of November, so I should have budgeted my time better, but somehow November felt like ten days instead of 30. And then, with one side and a bit to go, I was furiously binding the quilt today, watching the elusive sun play with my 'good quilt photographs' mind, and?

The power suddenly went out. In the daytime??? I quick went on the Hydro One website for power outages and read that a crew was on it, and estimated outage time was ....

THREE HOURS.

I may have said one (or more) very bad words. I gave it one hour, went and had a bite of lunch, did a little browsing on Instagram, paced around a bit, and then suddenly, half an hour later, poof! It was back on. So this was able to happen at the Leamington Marina this afternoon!
Isn't that the most divine spot for a quilt?! And it wasn't very windy today, yay! The vessel in the background, well, there are two, but the large one is one of the Pelee Island ferries that run from either Leamington or Kingsville from April through the first week of December. I was pretty happy to get them in the photo shoot!

All of the fabrics in the quilt were supplied by Island Batik, the batting by Hobbs Batting, and the threads for quilting by Aurifil. This month we were to use tools in our sewing rooms to make a lap size or larger quilt. I used several tools, but the main ones were the Sidekick ruler by Jaybird Quilts, along with her Hex N More ruler.

Throwback Thursday #24 - Jackets

This is the last TBT for 2019 and most likely the last one as an official linky party. I still plan to write up and document my pre-blogging quilts, so you may see these posts still in 2020. Thank you to those of you who have pulled out and photographed and written up the story on your older quilts, and thank you to Andrée of Quilting & Learning - What a Combo! who has hosted every other month this year, and who is hosting December's party.

Wow, it seems just a couple of months ago we were still recovering and reminiscing about Dayna and Tyler's wedding, making plans for me to go for Christmas to Brianne and Brady's, and getting excited to go to MĂ©rida, Mexico in January. How can twelve months have flown by so fast?

I've wanted to write up these jackets for some time, but I either forget about them or I spy another older quilt I write about. So at last, here is the quilted jackets post. These go back to the early 2000s.